Alex Trebek offered words of encouragement to Congressman John Lewis as they are both battling pancreatic cancer.
Let’s beat cancer in 2020, the Jeopardy! host said in an interview with The Associated Press.
“We’re starting a new year, and let’s see if we can’t both complete the year as pancreatic cancer survivors,” Trebek told the AP when asked what he would tell Lewis. He noted they’re the same age, 79.
“I have been in some kind of fight — for freedom, equality, basic human rights — for nearly my entire life. I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now,” Lewis said via a statement. “This month in a routine medical visit, and subsequent tests, doctors discovered Stage IV pancreatic cancer. This diagnosis has been reconfirmed.
“While I am clear-eyed about the prognosis, doctors have told me that recent medical advances have made this type of cancer treatable in many cases, that treatment options are no longer as debilitating as they once were, and that I have a fighting chance,” he added.
Trebek, who has been a part of the hit TV game show since 1984, made his illness public last March and has shared his progress and setbacks, the AP reports.
While it’s unclear if he will make a departure from the show anytime soon, Trebek is confident the successful show will thrive with someone new, the AP reports.
“No matter who’s hosting it, ‘Jeopardy!’ will go on. It’s a quality program and it’s put together by very bright people. And when I move on, that doesn’t matter,” he told the AP. “It’s the best kind of reality television, so it will endure.”
For now, Trebek pushes forward and despite “struggling a bit,” he just finished taping a prime-time special, Jeopardy! The Greatest of All Time, last month, which begins airing on Tuesday (Jan. 7) on ABC, the AP reports.
As for Lewis, he will continue to serve in the House of Representatives.
“I have decided to do what I know to do and do what I have always done: I am going to fight it and keep fighting for the Beloved Community,” the Georgia Democrat said via his statement. “We still have many bridges to cross.”